ASIA NEWS NETWORK
WE KNOW ASIA BETTER
Gangs in M'sia brazenly going public on social media
Publication Date : 13-08-2013
Gone are the days of secret gang handshakes and code words – now members of organised crime in Malaysia are brazenly going public.
Several of the gangs which made the news recently – like the swastika logo "21", the Indian-dominated "36" and mixed-race "18" – are on Facebook.
Although the Facebook groups are closed and require approval to join, the names of administrators and some members are clearly listed.
Some of the Facebook group gangs are the 04, 21 (Klang and Shah Alam divisions), 1804 Kaigelz (the gangs 18 and 04 are linked, with 18 drawing its name from the 18 Immortals of Buddhism), and 36, also known as “Bob Marley”.
The members of these groups have blatantly open profiles, and post threatening status updates and photographs.
A Facebook user who calls himself “Suria Jahat”, and is purportedly a member of gang 36, sports the Sanskrit "Om" symbol as a logo, and the colours red, blue and yellow on his profile page.
His uploads include photos of stacks of 50 ringgit (US$15.35) and 10 ringgit ($3.07) notes wrapped in newspaper and tied together with rubber bands, and a machate.
He also uploaded a photo of The Star’s recent news story “Gang 36 one of the most feared in the nation”, with the caption "bila-bila hidup!" (meaning "always alive" in Malay).
36 is an offshoot of the infamous 30, or "Tiga Line" gang.
Also shocking is the young age of some of the members. A youth posted a picture of himself on a 36-linked Facebook page.
In the photo, he is wearing his school uniform and holding a drawing of the "Om" symbol in gang colours and a crudely-sketched hand giving the Tiga Line hand sign.
According to an older member of the 04 gang who declined to be named, the younger generation was a liability.
The gang member said that these youths did not treat the gangs like a secret society, and brandished logos and hand signs around in plain view.